My Bible reading plan has me currently reading the book of Job. It’s an amazing story of suffering and recovery that we can glean insight and instruction from, as well apply it to this tumultuous season we’ve been in. It also gives us a glimpse into the heart of God and his desire to show us His goodness.
If you’re in the hand sanitizing business you’re doing well, but Like Job, some of you are experiencing great loss, and your lives have been filled with uncertainty, sorrow and grief. You may be asking yourselves, “How could this happen to me?” and “How do I recover from this?” Job 1:1-3 says that He was blameless and upright; he feared God and shunned evil; and that He was the greatest man among all the people of the East. Yet in one day he lost everything.
Job 1:13-17 explains that he lost his oxen, donkeys, camels, and sheep. Today that would be equivalent to us losing our business, employment, personal wealth, and transportation. After suffering that loss Job could at least say “I still have my family.”
Then tragedy struck again. Job 1:18-20 describes a natural disaster that collapsed his eldest son’s home and all ten of his children perished. All that had defined Job and his prosperity was gone. Where do I go from here? What do I have to work with? “I still have my health!”
Job 2:7-8 says his health also failed him. Job was stuck with terrible sores. He was ulcers and scabs from head to foot so that his friends could barely recognize him. Job 2:8 says he went and sat on a trash heap, among the ashes. What circumstances in our lives have left us unrecognizable to our piers, and reduced to ashes?
Job 1:22 says, “In all of this, Job did not sin by blaming God.” Job learned that suffering refines, that through affliction God speaks and that his current situation could be what saves him from future failure. Someone once told me that when they watched a parade from a high-rise building, they had the vantage point to see the start, turns, straight paths, and the end of the parade. That’s God’s view of our lives. He sees the beginning, the end and all the in between. That’s why we can trust Him.
Rom 8:28 says “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.” One day could bring suffering and another great healing, but through it all we need to know that we are trusting a loving God whose intention is to heal and restore us. This is the heart of God. After all Job endured, he was re-established. Job 42:10-17 says that after some time Job was restored and that the Lord blessed the latter part of his life more than the former part. Don’t run, but lean into God. He’s got this!
Gabe Gary is pastor at The Bridge Exeter. He may be reached by calling 559-592-4828.
Prays Together is a rotating column between the pastors of the First Presbyterian Church of Exeter, Church of Christ of Exeter, Nazarene Church of Exeter, Church of God of Exeter, the New Life Assembly of God and Rocky Hill Community Church as well as the Lemon Cove Presbyterian Church.
– This column is not a news article but the opinion of the writer and does not reflect the views of The Sun-Gazette newspaper.